By Lora O’Brien
Scandinavia is having a huge moment right now. If you’ve been reading Eluxe, you’ll know that not only does the region produce some of the most eco-friendly fashion around, but it’s also behind an enormous number of organic skincare brands.
But long before the green trend took root in the Nordic lands, Scandinavian interior design has been amongst the most admired in the world. From the sleek lines of Danish furniture to the economical stylings of Sweden’s Ikea, just about anyone has a little touch of Scandi cool in their home already, but if you’d like to take your home decor a little further North, we’ve got the perfect styling tips for you right here. Here are 5 Steps to Perfect Nordic Interiors.
1. Keep it Simple
One key to this style is to keep your scheme simple. Whether you’re choosing to decorate your bedroom, living area or kitchen, the main pieces of furniture should have clean, simple lines and be neutral in colour: think modernist sofas in simple, unpatterned textiles or leather, mid-century antique furniture, natural wooden tables and classic Danish chairs. If you crave a splash of colour, you can introduce this later with accessories–but not too much bric a brac! A defining trait of Scandi style is clean minimalism.
Images above: http://lovenordic.blogspot.com/
Images above: wharfside.com
2. Choose Neutral Shades
When choosing base tones for your Scandi look, you should start with any shade you may see on a rocky shore: stony greys, putty neutrals, eggshell white or charcoal would all work, as would deep sea blues and greens. Personally, I’m partial to white walls and white floors, but if that’s a bit impractical, try neutral walls and perhaps a light grey or natural wood stain on your floors. Of course, you should choose eco friendly paints and stains to avoid nasty toxic fumes. Try Auro, New Life Paints, or Nutshell Paints.
3. Go Natural
Wool, leather, wood, cotton, velvet, linen, ceramic, glass, silk and even paper are all wonderful, natural materials that should be the basis for just about everything in your Scandi-influenced home. From sheets and throws to carpets and furniture, if it’s not found in nature, it shouldn’t be part of your interior. And of course, things found in nature are never ‘perfect’–so don’t worry about asymmetries, knots in wood, variations in shades of colour–there’s always a bit of ‘shabby chic’ integrated into Scandi interiors!
4. Mix Up The Textures
This is easy when you’re using natural materials: the grain of the wood, the softness of buttery leather and rough cottons and linens all come together to give some subtle, interesting variety to your room. Using different textures not only infuses the room with a sense of visual warmth, but will make it feel cosy and best of all, comfortable. Don’t be afraid to clash textures and to use layering techniques for rugs, cushions and throws. Look on Etsy and Ebay for homemade artisanal crafts, ceramics and carpets. And of course, Ikea is always an option!
6. The Right Accessories
For walls, either keep them bare, or use one statement piece –muted tones work best here. Clusters of simple black frames holding monochrome prints or black and white photos are another interesting option. As the basis for Scandi style is so neutral, the simple addition of a plant not only adds a burst of colour, but is in keeping with the all-natural theme. Animal themed prints and posters are a great complement to such a natural interior, as are subtle touches of ethnic embroidery or weaving. As for lighting, industrial lights work well here, as do modernist classics, like oversized Japanese paper globes, the ‘Sputnik’ or artichoke-shaped pendants, but if you prefer a more feminine touch, why not try a classic antique chandelier?
Images above: http://lovenordic.blogspot.com